Post Materialism In Australia Essay

470 Words2 Pages
Australian society, prior to the 1960’s, was characterised by adamant respect for authority and socially dictated formalities. Marriage was a major social institution defined by a heterosexual couple married in religious ceremony, with procreation being the focus of these relationships. Men were expected to be the breadwinners of the family and marriage was considered the normative expectation for women, where they became the centre of kinship communication. To live in partnership unmarried was considered scandalous and pregnancy outside of marriage was more so.

The 1960’s became a key moment of social change which saw a significant shift in societal attitudes, values and patterns of family formation and gender relations. The introduction of the pill in 1961 was viewed as an ‘equaliser’ in providing women the same sexual freedom as men, aiding in a rise of promiscuity and the separation of reproduction from sex which directly opposed deeply ingrained religious values of society. Women no longer had to choose between having a family and having an occupation, and this lead to not only the de-institutionalisation of reproductive partnerships but also an increase in singleness and childlessness. This is evident in a steady decline in the crude
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The removal of the White Australia Policy and introduction of the Racial Discrimination Act in 1975 as the number of non-European immigrants settled in Australia resulted in an increase in cultural diversity. The first decriminalisation of homosexuality came in 1972 and reformations for divorce in The Family Act in 1975 meant that divorce no longer required either party to have a given reason for it. These events were just some of the few social changes that defined a more ‘permissive society’ from which began the deregulation of personal life and decline in the power of the state to impose a moral
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